mt. lebanon St. Clair Hospital adding modern operating rooms

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In less than a year, an area now occupied by nine parking spots will house three new state-of-the-art operating rooms for St. Clair Hospital in Mt. Lebanon.

The $5.5 million project will add 7,429 square feet of operating space, featuring rooms with operating equipment and flat panel monitors mounted to the ceiling with "booms."

The rooms will also feature high windows, and though it won't be possible to look through them, they will allow natural light into the rooms, a perk administrative vice president and chief nursing officer Joan Massella said surgeons appreciate.

The Mt. Lebanon Municipal Commission approved the land development plan for the addition last week. The new rooms will face Bower Hill Road.

The hospital plans to break ground in mid-December and have the rooms open for surgeries in July 2010, Ms. Massella said.

St. Clair currently performs about 12,000 surgeries a year, but the volume rises about 3 percent to 4 percent annually, she said. Recently, operations have been scheduled from 7:30 in the morning until 8 or 9 in the evening.

The new operating rooms will help the hospital handle the rising demand and allow more patients to schedule procedures in the morning, she said. The hospital has 11 main operating rooms, and the addition of three more will result in a net increase of two, since one existing room will be eliminated.

The hospital's surgeons are looking forward to the completion of the construction project.

"I think they are very excited about having additional options for scheduling," Ms. Massella said.

The hospital does not anticipate surgical procedures will be interrupted while the new rooms are being constructed.


Kaitlynn Riely can be reached at kriely@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1707.


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